(Closed) Sarah Merian’s Photography – NY

posted 11 years ago in New York City
Post # 3
184 posts
Blushing bee

I’ve seen her advertised all over venues in Northern NJ but a quick peruse of her website shows that there’s a whole team of photographers so I don’t know which one you’ll get.  For this company, you’ll have to set up a meeting and see the photographer assigned to and view his portfolio.


Me personally?  From what I’ve seen, they’re pretty good but nowhere near my first choice. 

Post # 4
1 posts
  • Wedding: October 2009

I used a photographer from Sarah Merian’s company and had a really bad experience.  We paid top dollar and have very little to show for it.  Other than portraits before the ceremony, there are very few pictures of our family and friends at the reception.  Our photographer focused on random guests he found interesting to shoot and now we have 10 close ups of a girl we had just met (guest of a friend) and none of the bride’s mother, groom’s father or the groomsmen.  We also have more of the maid of honor and husband than the bride and groom dancing and no pictures of the parents dancing (they danced at least 4x).  Our photographer was also rude to the bride’s mother as she asked him to take a picture of her parents who had not been able to attend the pre ceremony portraits.  He snapped one picture and walked away before she could get another or a picture with her Aunt who she hadn’t seen in years.  Overall its been a miserable experience dealing with this vendor.  We still do not have our albums, as it took months for us to even get a Saturday appointement to just drop off the proofs we picked and pick an album cover color.  Pick your photograhper wisely because this is something that can’t be fixed.

Post # 5
202 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

To echo Oct1024 – – – pick your photographer wisely!  I’ve seen many a-friend fall prey to the Ritz Carlton of photography, and only be disappointed.  Sarah Merians is one of those – she was recommended by my venue, and most NYC venues, and I have at least 4 friends who have used her, all with completely different experiences.  I only got as far as a price request before realizing she charges WAY too much for the photos produced, but my taste is much different than hers & others. 

I’m not discouraging Sarah Merians….but advising not following a venue’s recommendation.  If you love her GREAT!!!  go for it.   Just be mindful of the many other options available to you in NYC.  


Post # 6
232 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

What’s your budget?  I thought of using SM and reviewed many of the albums venues would provide (who are on her pay roll… I mean, recommendation list).  The pictures were only okay but when you find out how much you have to pay, they are downright subpar.

There are so many good ones out there.  If you can afford SM, then I’d go with Joel Greenberg or Agaston Strom (super great work, was too pricey for me).  I really searched and found a photographer that gave me what I wanted (coverage, prints, etc.) without the bloated budget and his style suited me.  Bill Walsh of Stellaview Studios (he owns the studio).

Take your time and be real sure of who you get; after all, you can’t retake all the photos after your day comes and goes.  GL.

Post # 7
1 posts
  • Wedding: September 2008

We also had a terrible experience with Sarah Merians and ended up successfully suing the company in small claims court. Our wedding was in September 2008.
Below is a summary of some of the problems we encountered.
1. The photographer’s assistant didn’t bring a camera to the wedding, so we had one photographer instead of the two that were promised.
2. The DVD was delivered late and one copy was defective. When we asked to have it replaced, they delayed for almost two months before telling us that they no longer work with the videographer, couldn’t provide another copy and might not even be able to recover the raw footage. Eventually, they recovered the footage but wanted to charge us $600 to convert it to DVD (even though they were supposedly giving it to us to make up for not being able to provide the edited version). We refused and they sent us the footage in its original format (small tapes) which we will now have to convert ourselves.
3. Our actual photographer was nice but her pictures weren’t very good. In retrospect, she was disorganized on the day of the wedding and didn’t make sure to take a lot of pictures with the key participants (for example, there are only a handful of pictures of me with my father).
4. Our wedding album doesn’t look very good. A number of the pictures are pixilated and look like they were printed on a home printer.
5. After the wedding, the company refused to give us the high resolution digital images of our wedding pictures that were included in our contract. We fought with them for months and the employees refused to put us in touch with the owner, Sarah Merians. When we finally spoke to Sarah, she was extremely nasty and made it clear that she only cared about extracting as much money from us as possible. Ultimately, she said that she would only give us the high res images if we paid her an additional $1,500.
Because they had almost lost our video footage, we were worried that if we let any more time pass, we would never see our pictures. So, we paid the money and then sued to get it back.
The reviews on Yelp.com and knot.com describe similar stories.

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